The phoney war: waiting for the government to govern

By Stephen Bartos
Updated April 23 2018 - 9:26pm, first published March 4 2014 - 3:00am

After Germany invaded Poland in September 1939, France and Britain declared war. It took six more months for this to break out into a major conflict. Some clashes broke out, especially at sea, but it was not until April/May 1940 that large-scale warfare began. The months leading up to this came to be known as the phoney war. Soldiers and their generals, on both sides, were largely inactive; they watched with nervous apprehension for events to unfold and for their political leaders to launch them into action.

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